"It's the first time in a long while that this place has felt like a proper football club. Things are done right and it's been a breath of fresh air. It's just disappointing we couldn't stay up for him and the fans."
Newcastle defender Steven Taylor, who came through the academy system at the club, said: "The dressing room was like a funeral afterwards. Everybody was devastated.
"It's the worst feeling I've had as a professional footballer. It's the worst day in our careers.
"I've got the European Championships with England Under-21s to focus on now. That's all I can do but this is something I'll never, ever forget.
"The 3,000 Newcastle fans who came down to Villa Park are the reason you play.
"It's got to be an honour to play for Newcastle United Football Club. I know there will be changes but I don't know what's going to happen. As players, we haven't got a clue but I'd just ask the fans to stick with us next year."
Meanwhile, Magpies midfielder Jonas Gutierrez said he would put off any decision about his future until after Argentina's World Cup qualifiers against Colombia and Ecuador.
"Right now, the main thing is the national team. I want to make my contribution to the team, be with the guys and I hope I can play," he told TyC Sports cable channel.
"Once the qualifiers pass, we'll see what will happen with my future."
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